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Roe says House won't pass Obama's budget plan

March 8th, 2014 10:08 pm by Hank Hayes

Roe says House won't pass Obama's budget plan

U.S. Rep. Phil Roe

U.S. Rep. Phil Roe indicates President Barack Obama’s proposed $3.9 trillion 2015 budget plan won’t fly with House Republicans although Roe adds Congress will not go back to passing temporary continuing budget resolutions.

Obama’s budget plan calls for fresh spending to boost economic growth but also aims to raise taxes on the rich and further limit payments to health- care providers.

Roe, R-Tenn., points out the spending plan would shrink the military and increase funding to support the administration’s climate change plan, which he believes is a continuing war on coal.

He further contends the budget blueprint adds $8.3 trillion to the national debt over 10 years.

“The president’s budget never balances,” Roe said in a conference call with reporters. “It increases taxes and increases debt ... by 2020 we will spend more on interest payments than we do on national defense.”

But, as part of a budget agreement passed by Congress and signed by the president in January, Roe said lawmakers are committed to go through an appropriations process instead of acting on continuing budget resolutions.

“We’ve got to hash out our differences. ... There’s stuff that isn’t controversial, like the Veterans Administration and we’ve already made decisions on defense,” Roe explained.

Obama’s budget plan also calls for ending federal ties to the Tennessee Valley Authority, the nation’s largest federal utility.

Roe said district constituents don’t like the notion of Obama selling off TVA to private concerns.

“That idea came up two years ago. ... I did some town hall meetings and I didn’t have the first person who thought that (selling TVA) was a good idea,” Roe noted. “I can’t see that passing.”

Moving to the Ukraine crisis, Roe said the Obama administration is limited about what it can do, but could use economic sanctions and energy moves to keep Russia from taking over their former Soviet partner.

“If we were a net exporter of energy ... we could sell (Ukraine) cheaper natural gas ... quite frankly, energy is economic aid,” Roe pointed out.

On the push for legalization of medical marijuana, Roe said it should be studied and researched like any other drug.

“The fact that (marijuana) makes somebody feel good temporarily shouldn’t have anything to do with the science of this,” Roe claimed. “If a doctor had a new drug he wanted to bring out, he would have to go through a process at the (Food and Drug Administration) ... he would go through phases one, two and three of clinical trials that would have to prove it would be safe in humans ... you would put the risk, the benefits, the complications of using it on a label and then it’s prescribed. That’s how we do every other drug in the world.” 

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